The last week of July is a busy one for new games, as several high-profile games make their debut. New releases this week range from a horror puzzle game from Atlus to fresh maps for Call of Duty: Black Ops for the PlayStation 3.
Leading the charge is the well-received Catherine for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Catherine has players navigating tricky relationship waters (and equally tricky puzzles) as Vincent. When the commitment-phobic protagonist's girlfriend Katherine starts talking about taking their relationship to the next level, Vincent begins to stray. While out drinking with friends, he meets a flirty bombshell named Catherine, whom--after a series of events he can't quite recall--he wakes up next to the following morning.
In addition to helping Vincent make decisions to extricate himself from the situation, players will be called on to fight off the physical manifestations of his fears and guilt as he sleeps. Atlus is also including local competitive and cooperative multiplayer modes, as well as leaderboard support.
Also out this week is the second game in Microsoft's five-title Summer of Arcade promotion, Ubisoft's From Dust. Due out on Xbox Live Arcade and the PC, the game casts players as a supernatural force looking out for indigenous tribes in a seeming paradise beset by natural disasters.
By transporting land, water, vegetation, and lava around tropical environs, players can open up new pathways for villagers and protect them from earthquakes and other calamities. The various threats in the game can also be turned to the player's advantage; for example, a well-placed tsunami could extinguish wildfires rather than sweep away villages.
PlayStation 3 gamers looking to pick up new maps for Call of Duty: Black Ops can grab the Annihilation downloadable content for Treyarch's period shooter this Wednesday. It contains four new multiplayer maps and one fresh zombie level. The new killing spaces included in the downloadable content are Hangar 18, Silo, Drive-In, and Hazard. The zombie level is titled Shangri-La, described by Activision as "an exotic and mysterious map."
Those who prefer fantasy to shooting can pick up new content for Dragon Age II this week for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC. The Legacy content arrives on Wednesday, and in it, gamers will suit up again as protagonist Hawke, travelling to an ancient Grey Warden prison. Players will uncover additional details about his family history. Additionally, Hawke will visit new environments, battle new and "improved" enemies, craft a deadly weapon, and ultimately come face-to-face with a terrible horror.
Players looking for a new portable game this week can pick up Pac-Man and Galaga Dimensions for the 3DS. The bundle includes Pac-Man Tilt, Galaga 3D, and a handful of other titles from the seminal arcade franchises in one package.
A spin-off from the original maze-navigating, pellet-munching adventure, Pac-Man Tilt is a 2D platformer that will make use of the 3DS accelerometer. Players will be able to tilt the world as a way to solve environmental puzzles and evade roaming enemies. Namco Bandai will also be playing off Pac-Man's spherical shape, as he is able to roll into a ball to speed through levels, bouncing off pinball flippers and springboards along the way.
Galaga 3D Impact will also be a riff on the tried-and-true arcade shooter formula and sees the spaceship-versus-aliens contest shift to the first-person shooter realm. The 3DS's gyroscopic and 3D feature will factor into Galaga 3D Impact, as players will be able to physically move the system to take aim and fire at enemies before those enemies can destroy human civilization.
Lastly, Section 8: Prejudice is out this week for the PlayStation 3. Originally released in April on the Xbox 360, the PS3 version includes a number of features its console counterpart did not have. Section 8: Prejudice for the PS3 will include two new multiplayer game modes: Skirmish and Assault. Additionally, those who purchase the game during its debut week will score the Blitz Armor pack and the Overdrive map pack for free.
For further details on the week's games, visit GameSpot's New Releases page. The full list of downloadable games on the PlayStation Store, Xbox Live Marketplace, and Wii Shop Channel will be revealed later this week. Release dates are based on retailer listings and subject to change
TUESDAY, JULY 26
Back to the Future: The Game - Episode V: OUTATIME--PS3--Telltale Games
Dragon Age II: Legacy--PS3, PC, X360--Electronic Arts
Deadliest Warriors: Legends--PS3--Spike Games
Gabrielle's Ghostly Groove--3DS--Natsume
Pac-Man and Galaga Dimensions--3DS--Namco Bandai Games
Section 8: Prejudice--PS3--TimeGate Studios
The Sims 3: Town Life Stuff--PC--Electronic Arts
Warhammer 40,000: Kill Team--PS3--THQ
WEDNESDAY, JULY 27
From Dust--X360, PC--Ubisoft
Call of Duty: Black Ops - Annihilation--PS3, PC--Activision